Here in America, the country of its origins, the Thanksgiving holiday is becoming less important as time wears on. On facebook, I see statuses complaining about Christmas candy hitting the store shelves before Halloween is over and about Christmas songs playing on the radio already. When I turn on the tv, I see Christmas-themed commercials. Same thing if I open a magazine – I’m bombarded with Christmas cookie recipes and gift ideas, etc, etc. Where did Thanksgiving go? Huh? Maybe there needs to be a genre of music called GRATITUDE MUSIC, or what-have-you. I can understand people getting excited for Christmas. My dad put lights up on the house on Veterans Day. I understand that one… my mom wanted him to do it before it snowed, and 4 days later, it did snow. I bet he’s glad he listened to her.
Do you know what was on the menu that first Thanksgiving when the Native Americans and the English settlers gathered around the table? It will make your mind boggle: venison, goose, turkey, sea bass, cod, cornmeal, fruits, and vegetables. Can you imagine a Thanksgiving with venison? I don’t think I’ve ever had venison, come to think of it. Ew. I am not eating Bambi. And what about fish? Thanksgiving with fish? Uhhhh…. what alternate universe did you come from?
All that food and only 4 women to prepare it. The guest list was long – 90 Wampanoag and 50 Pilgrims. For some reason, I seriously doubt any of you reading this will be feeding 140 people come Thursday. We mustn’t forget the Wampanoag were strangers to these Pilgrims, to these women who cooked this fine meal. And to be perfectly honest, since the first feast was held outdoors (since there were hardly any buildings large enough to hold that many people), it was really more like a coming-together-for-a-picnic thing than any formal affair.
A side note: I bet if the original Pilgrims and Wampanoag could see us now, they’d be shaking their heads. Christmas comes AFTER Thanksgiving, not before. And also, I bet they’d be totally amazed at the technology today. What they had back then in 1621 was nothing compared to what we have now in 2011. They’d be like, “Ahhhhh!” if they saw the traffic and the highways. They’d be like, “Eeeeee!” if they saw how people dressed and acted today. Women in pants? Women working alongside men? Women voting? Get out of here!
They say seeing is believing for a reason.
And today, where is the Thanksgiving love? I do see people on facebook posting about things they are grateful for – family, friends, pets, a little “them” time, a roof over their heads, food in their stomachs, clothes on their bodies, etc, etc. But, Christmas candy, Christmas-themed Starbucks cups, and Christmas music? Already? December 25 isn’t even Jesus’ real birthday – He was born during tax season, which is in spring (even back then? I dunno. I am just guessing). What we’re really celebrating is the winter solstice. And in that case, bah humbug!
I love Christmas, I do. I love the spirit of it. We have the right idea. What better way to celebrate the birth of our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ than giving each other presents? The spirit of giving, that is what Christmas is all about. Love is what Jesus is about. Love is what Christmas is about. And THANKSgiving, yep, you’ve got it. It’s about giving THANKS. When did that fall by the wayside?
This year, put Christmas aside for a one and a half more days, and celebrate, really and truly celebrate Thanksgiving. What are you the most grateful for?